In the very deep south—nearly to Antarctica—is a modern hotel that looks somewhat foreboding at first glance. On closer inspection, you'll find the place alternately cozy and grand, private and social, meant to evoke the simultaneously calming and awe-inspiring Patagonian wild beyond.
Located in Puerto Natales, Chile, Indigo Patagonia was designed by Chilean architect Sebastián Irarrázaval and driven by three guiding concepts. The first: that a visitor should discover the hotel in "glances," not as a whole, just as a visitor to Patagonia would discover its famous diversity one valley, glacier, or flower at a time.
The second tenet was to be as sensitive to the provincial character of the region as possible, and to prevent the hotel from adding "noise" of any kind.
The third driving force was to radically differentiate the coziness of private spaces from the vastness of public ones, mimicking the contrast between the inviolably private places to be found in the Patagonian wild with its famously monumental scale.
Photography by Cristobal Palma, except where noted.
Above: Befitting an uber-chic lodge in a ruggedly beautiful country, even rustic details like stacked firewood live alongside glossy black floors and digital-age lighting.
Above: Inside, the deep red of the hotel's facade mellows into burned reds and ochres. Cozy spaces like this one exist on the horizontal and are tucked into small, flat nooks.
Above: The interior of the two-story restaurant mimics the architecture of the 6-story hotel. The architects emptied the core of the former house with a "Y" shaped void, transforming the building into a social space with lounge upstairs and restaurant below.
Above: The hotel's 29 rooms are organized around a huge central void, meant to be explored and revealed in "glances" by the viewer via a network of ramps, staircases, and bridges.
Above: The architect wanted to reference the region's forests and timber as well as its industrial, seafaring side. The building is clad in corrugated steel for facades facing the street, and weather-treated pine for those facing the water.
Above: Developed in conjunction with the architecture, graphic design by Chilean firm C Proyecta uses a visual language already present in the area: that of passing container ships. Photo by Kyle Hepp.
Above: Rooftop soaking spas offer unparalleled views of the Last Hope Sound and glaciers beyond. Photo by Kyle Hepp.
Above: The hotel offers excursions around Puerto Natales and into Torres del Paine National Park, shown here.
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